Updated at 1pm – 1st April 2020

Quetzal during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Caring for ourselves during the Coronavirus

In this uncertain and isolating times paced by a constant flow of international news, past and current trauma can be exacerbated. All we are feeling is valid, and to find some control and manage at best during these times of distancing, we need to develop and maintain routine and structure in our daily lives.

GINA, a Private Specialist, Trauma-informed Support for individuals subjected to sexual violence and abuse developed a resource to care  for ourselves during the coronavirus pandemic. We invite you to have a read.

Juniper Lodge, Leicestershire sexual assault referral centre also developed a leaflet with Coping Strategies COVID 19

Care for

  • your body with exercise, eating nourishing and healthy meal, a nap and good hydration,
  • your mind through arts and journaling,
  • your spirit through affirmation and gratitude
  • your social connection by writing letters and calling friends

Do more: listen to music, sing, garden, declutter, watch a film, bake a cake, have a cup of tea, play a game, start a project.

Beware of scams and fraud during the COVID-19 Pandemic

We invite clients, counsellors, staff, and partners to be more vigilant against fraud and scams during Covid-19 pandemic.

According to Action Fraud, criminals are targeting people who want to purchase medical supplies, protective and hygienic items (i.e. face-masks hand sanitisers, fake testing kits) , and scam people who may be vulnerable and increasingly isolated. For more information on the most common COVID-19 frauds and the steps to keep yourself safe, visit Action fraud

Quetzal continue to support women recovering from the trauma of childhood sexual abuse during this uncertain period by:

  • Providing face-to-face assessment and counselling sessions over the telephone. If you have a face-to-face appointment due with your counsellors, please call Quetzal to arrange it over the telephone.
  • Having our helplines open for support. Call us on 0333 101 4280 or 07436 530605 from Monday to Friday between 9-5pm.
  • Checking our emails. Send us an email on help (AT) quetzal.org.uk

With Coronavirus dominating the headlines around the world, anxiety about the disease can have an impact on people’s mental health and wellbeing. Counsellors are sharing their thoughts on what can help with the mental health impact on the BACP website. What can help include amongst other things: taking care of your wellbeing by eating and sleeping, doing something you can control and reaching out to someone such as a counsellor to explore further your feelings and thought process. For more details on what to do, check the article here:

On the Conversation, Stephen Harris also share how to stop anxiety spiralling out of control and encourage each one of us as such to step away from checking and monitoring news update. Check the article here:

How to stop anxiety spiralling out of control – The Conversation

During this period of crisis, Quetzal continue to deliver counselling, take new referral and conduct assessment to support women recovering from the trauma of childhood sexual abuse and this through the telephone or online counselling. Give us a call on 0333 101 4280 for further information.

Further information for volunteer counsellors and staff on how to manage the anxiety during the outbreak:

Briefing note on addressing mental health and psychosocial aspects of COVID-19 OutbreakVersion 1.1

At the first governmental daily briefing on the 16th March 2020, the Government briefed UK citizens and residents on important measures to delay the outbreak in the UK in order to reduce the enormous pressures on the National Health System, and to respond to the pandemic, which is spreading in multiple countries around the world at the same time.

Quetzal has been following closely the official advice from Public Health England (PHE) announcement and have decided to communicate early and escalate our response to protect our clients, volunteers, and staff members. The key points of our response are:

  • All face-to-face assessment and counselling sessions for existing clients will until further notice be conducted over the telephone. If you have a face-to-face appointment due with your counsellors, please call Quetzal to arrange it over the telephone.
  • Our helplines will be still open for support 0333 101 4280 or 07436 530605 from Monday to Friday between 9-5pm.

We will keep taking new referrals, conduct assessment and deliver counselling services to ensure that women recovering from the trauma of childhood sexual abuse are supported, especially if they find themselves in distress over period of self-isolation.

You will almost certainly have further questions about the detail of all this and we want to assure you that we will give regular updates as more information becomes available.

The new guidance for household with possible COVID-19 infection  can be found here. They include the need to self-isolate for 14 days in case an indidivuals in the household has symptoms of COVID-19 and a set of social distancing measures to reduce the risk of infection from the spread of coronavirus.

For those who are over 70, with underlying health  condition or are pregnant, are advised to significantly limit face-to-face interaction with friends and family if possible.

For those who remain well,are under 70 or do not have an underlying health condition, tey are advised to limit their social contact where possible, includng usng less public transport, working at home and considering not going to pubs, restaurants, theatres and bars.

The awareness campaign also reiterates the importance of seeking help online by visiting NHS.UK/coronavirus to check your symptoms and follow the medical advice, rather than visiting your GP. It also urges people with any symptoms to avoid contact with older and more vulnerable people.

Only if symptoms become worse should people use the NHS 111 service. To ensure the phone service is readily available to those who need it, where possible people should use the 111 website rather than calling.

Washing hands regularly for 20 second or more remains the single most important thing each of us can do as much as staying at home if anyone shows symptoms.